NASA to Test Flight Its Own Martian Flying Saucer

NASA to Test Flight Its Own Martian Flying Saucer

nasa flying saucer for mars.jpg



In June NASA will test fly a saucer shaped spacecraft that will be used to land heavy payloads and humans on Mars in the future. The vehicle will be lifted via a balloon to 120,000 feet and dropped. The saucer’s booster rocket will then fire and lift the vehicle to 180,000 feet at a speed of Mach 4. This simulates the density of the atmosphere and conditions of a landing on Mars. The vehicle, known as the Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator (LDSD) will then inflate a Kevlar tube called a Supersonic Inflatable Aerodynamic Decelerator and an enormous parachute called the Supersonic Disk Sail Parachute to test how the craft will behave during a martian landing. A lot of long names and a few more saucers in the pipeline for future practice landing missions. This is one area worth keeping an eye on.


To learn more visit:


http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.php?release=2014-154&rn=news.xml&rst=4143


Image credit:


NASA/JPL-Caltech 

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